Seeking Solace in Szechuan


Seeking Solace in Szechuan


take my seat on a wobbly stool just before the show begins. Around me, strays mingle with street urchins, taking turns to watch me with hungry eyes, hoping I show some charity or moral character and throw them the proverbial bone. Joining me also is an audience of college-goers, nine-to-five corporate ladder climbers, cops, alcoholics, and others who’ve hit the bud just like myself.

We’ve gathered here for a ringside seat to a spectacle that plays out every evening. The Dragon Chines Cornar (Dragon Chinese Corner is what they mean) lies a few metres from my house. It is home to Tarunesh, my dealer, and Bobby, his bungling assistant. On weekends, I find myself seated in front of the duo twice a day for my daily fix.